August 28, 2008 | Mark Paradies

Incident Report on Fatal Living Accommodations Unit That Flipped During a Storm

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The following incident report is passed along for the interest of readers…

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Location: ONSHORE : Other onshore

Release Date: 19 August 2007

Time incident occurred: 22:00

Type of Activity: Off-duty/recreation activities

Type of Injury: Struck by

Function: Drilling

A fatal accident occurred at the Contractor civil camp at approximately 22:15 h (GMT), on the 19th August 2007. A sand storm involving extreme winds, passed over the camp and lifted, turned and moved 2 sleeper units. The wind is estimated to have reached violent storm conditions (11+ Beaufort scale). At the time of the storm most workers were asleep or at rest in their transportable accommodation units. The long sides of two transportable accommodation units (one 12 meters / 4.5 metric tons and the other 9 meters / 2.5 metric tons) were exposed perpendicular to the wind direction. The force of the wind was sufficient to move these 2 transportable accommodation units. The small unit “turned into the wind”, rolled once and hence moved only a small distance. The large unit made 5
π full turns over a distance of 72 meters ending with the doors facing down. Subsequently a local rescue operation was launched and the injured were evacuated to the nearest hospital. At the time of the accident an on-site clinic and nurse were present, but the on-site medic and ambulance were in the local town.

In the larger unit a total of 3 persons suffered minor injuries but tragically one (Algerian national) was fatally injured (the investigation report concludes he probably lost his life instantaneously due to basal skull fracture and a broken neck). In the smaller unit one minor injury occurred. The storm also caused damage to other transportable accommodation units, fences, cars, trucks, water tower, poles, etc.

Corrective Actions and Recommendations:

Risk of high winds was identified in the drilling HAZID but not the threat of violent storm winds on mobile units in the civil camp. A global standard is to be developed for the planning and design of temporary “project camps”.
The ‘Hazards Inventory and Register’ has been updated for violent storm risk.
Improved oversight and control by company and international SOS (iSOS) during civil works in Algeria (on-site supervision, iSOS control framework etc.).

27 August 2008
OGP Safety Incident Reports

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